Earlier this month, Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin signed the state budget into law. Nina Rees, President and CEO of the National Alliance of Public Charter Schools, issued the following statement.
“The 2022 state legislative session ended, and Virginia lawmakers failed to overhaul the state’s notoriously weak charter school law. On the campaign trail last year, Governor Glenn Youngkin promised to listen to families and give them a say in their children’s education. However, those families stuck in underperforming district schools, those frustrated with indifference to education shown during the pandemic, and those desperate for a better public school option for their children will be forced to continue waiting because of the failure to act by Governor Youngkin and Virginia legislators.
“While the state made some minor changes to an existing law allowing laboratory schools and provided some funding for higher educational institutions to start these schools, it failed to open the door to allowing educators, parents, community groups, and others to start new, high-quality public charter schools – an absolute necessity to spurring the innovation needed to provide all students with an excellent education.
“We thank those Delegates and Senators who voted for a bill that would have significantly improved the state’s charter school law, although the bill ultimately died in the Senate. We urge the governor, the Assembly, and the Senate to take care of this unfinished business in 2023 and we stand ready to work with members in both parties to get these changes done for the state’s families, especially those who need better public schools now.”